‘Thinking is the hardest work there is’ – Henry Ford.

Apply this to the world of Marketing and you quickly arrive at the idea of Positioning.  Of course the rational customer, weighs up all the costs and benefits of their purchase, but mostly we are not rational customers.  We like a short cut, we go with what we know.  We go with what we have heard of, with what feels safe and what springs to mind first.  We haven’t got time to make a rational choice.

What this means for new businesses is that if you are trying to join a market place you are at a massive disadvantage and indeed Positioning argues you would be better off not trying.  In fact you would be better off inventing a new market which others then join you in.  Typically this means carving out a new niche market, but it could be about creating a market place for a particular group of clients or a new product.

The promise of the approach is a massive advantage over everyone else you trys to join you and ultimately the ability to charge more than the competitors that join you.  It explains why Kelloggs Cornflakes is almost double the price / 100g of Sainsburys own brand yet virtually indistinguishable in a taste test.  We pay more for Kelloggs because we trust it a more, we feel safe with it, we automatically reach out for it when we can’t be bothered to make a rational choice.  And why? Because Kelloggs invented breakfast cereal as we know it.

That was the seminar in a nutshell.  We had a smaller group that allowed us to work together to explore possible positions for the businesses represented in the room.

Feedback met our usual high standards – the seminar was rated 10/10 for overall value.